Middle East / North Africa

Slew of arrests in Egypt

In a much longer blog, “a paper bird,” published today by human rights activist Scott Long, he writes that a teacher and several of his students were arrested in Egypt last week.  We re-publish Scott’s account of these arrests below:

Defendants cover their faces during Cairo trial that followed the last wholesale arrests of LGBTI Egyptians, back in 2001. (Photo courtesy of Scott Long)

Defendants cover their faces during Cairo trial that followed wholesale arrests of LGBTI Egyptians, back in 2001. (Photo courtesy of Scott Long)

“If you are a lesbian, gay, or trans Egyptian, your life is not your own.

It’s not just that police could smash the door and seize your body at any moment; it’s that your desires and emotions, the most intimate elements of existence, now nourish somebody else’s political agenda.

The Muslim Brotherhood’s mouthpieces trumpet that their archenemies in the military regime encourage “gay marriage.” The government responds by blaming the Brotherhood for spreading immoral sex.

In a slew of arrests last week, cops hauled in a teacher in the Cairo suburb of Helwan, accused of homosexual conduct along with several students. The press called the lead defendant a terrorist who tried to recruit men to Islamism by sleeping with them. Prosecutors added that he liked to flash the Brotherhood’s four-finger salute during sex.

To be gay or trans in Egypt is to be naked in no man’s land, not just caught in crossfire but used for target practice by warring sides…

English: Egyptian Initiative for Personal Righ...

Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR) Logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Dalia Abd El-Hameed heads the Gender Program at the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR). The EIPR has provided legal assistance to people persecuted for alleged homosexual conduct in Egypt ever since it was founded in 2002.  She writes:

For months, we have been busy trying to sort out news on the crackdown on gays and LGBT people in Egypt. Activists and people from the community were trying to do their best whether in terms of legal intervention, documentation of the violations and keeping record of the crackdown, and responding to the fierce media campaign demonizing and pathologizing homosexuality.

Personally, I do not separate this crackdown on LGBT from the general oppressive climate and the regressive rights and liberties status. Journalists, students, human rights activists and gender and religious non- conformists are all under attack by the regime.”

Click on this link to read the complete Blog by Scott Long

20 thoughts on “Slew of arrests in Egypt

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